Efforts to track the diversity of journalism are lagging | Nationwide

New York (AP) — More than a year after George Floyd’s murder focused on efforts to diversify the newsroom, the ability to measure real progress proves elusive.

The Newsreaders Association, a journalism industry group, has extended the deadline for responding to media surveys on employment practices by two months after expressing disappointment with the lack of willingness to reveal staff diversity.

Professor Meredith Clark of Northeastern University, who is conducting the survey, said the group expects as much participation as possible from an estimated 5,900 newsrooms nationwide, but less than 250 responses.

“As a researcher and journalist, I’m deeply disappointed that the journalism industry isn’t transparent about its workforce in the way other industries expect it to be transparent about them,” Clark said.

There are signs of concrete progress in the industry. In particular, some major journalism jobs have diverse employment. Kevin Merida, the second black editor-in-chief of the Los Angeles Times after Dean Baquet; Kim Godwin When Rashida Jones, Both black women as president of ABC News and MSNBC. The Dallas Morning News and Miami Herald’s first black editor-in-chief, Katris Hardy and Monika Chardson.When Daisy Vilasingham, the first woman and first colored race to be appointed President and Chief Executive Officer of The Associated Press..

The newsroom for the entire Ganet chain, The New York Times, The Washington Post, and NBC News publish statistics on diversity adoption. There is a large view of past prejudices in newspaper coverage such as The Kansas City Star and the Los Angeles Times.

Despite these steps, the big picture of overall diversity remains blurry.

A newsroom diversity survey was conducted, first through its predecessor, the American Society of News Editors, following a report by the Kerner Commission, which stated that the absence of black journalists had “shocked back” since the mid-1970s. I did. The news organization was given the goal of having staff that reflected the community by 2000.

Miriam Marquez, executive director of the newsreader group, which includes executives from newspapers, websites and media groups, said:

The lack of diversity can be manifested in many news decisions. For many critics, attention was paid to the story of Gabby Petite, a young woman who was found dead after a cross-country trip with her fiancé. It reflects long-standing concerns that journalists are paying more attention to missing white women than minorities. In a similar situation.

Despite some improvements, the 2020 target has not been met, and the industry’s collapse over the last two decades has diminished concerns about diversity. Participation in the annual survey was uneven and only 293 responses were received, so it was suspended in 2019.

Clark has created a more thorough and modern questionnaire and hired to find ways to get more participation as pressure from internal peers has proven to be inadequate. I was struck.

This year’s efforts got off to a slow start, as many of the group’s contact lists were initially out of date. The survey asked for more information than in the last few years, but found that it would take time. Some organizations have expressed concern about staff privacy breaches, but organizers argue that it should not be an issue.

Hardy, a new Dallas editor, said, “Frankly, people may know if people have filled in that the current state of the news organization isn’t what they expected. No, “he said. Head of the NLA Diversity Commission. “I always think it’s a factor in every year, especially after a year of social unrest.”

Organizations are being asked to provide information rather than taking random samples, so organizations that are making progress towards achieving their diversity goals are most likely to participate, and what the survey really is. Is questioning whether it reflects what is happening. on.

Nearly 90 of the surveys returned came from the Gannett newspaper, which was particularly active in promoting diversity, and last month all newspaper editors reported to readers on their progress in achieving their goals. As a company, Gannett has set 2025 as a goal for stores to reach community and racial and gender equality.

As an example, The Arizona Republic said in July that 38% of journalists were of color, up from 20% five years ago. The target is 44%.Executive Editor Greg Burton Told the reader How have reporting and editing obligations changed to cover the issue of impartiality?

Hardy said he wasn’t worried that the newsreader’s report would show false progress.

“I don’t think any of us are happy with where we are,” she said.

That may be a longer-term solution, but the group is considering asking the Foundation and others to fund the press to request participation in the investigation before getting a grant. The same is true for journalism awards. If you would like to participate in the Pulitzer Prize contest, please indicate that you have completed the survey.

Clark said the goal is to get 1,500 responses in order to produce a statistically sound report. It seems doubtful that it will arrive by the end of October, the new deadline. However, NLA President George Stanley said there is a baseline of participants, including Gannett, McClatchy newspaper, ProPublica, Buzzfeed and the Associated Press (the latter is the first time) and it is worth disclosing the information.

Stanley, editor of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, said:

New York Times Said earlier this year The percentage of non-white staff increased from 27% in 2015 to 34% last year. At the Times, The Washington Post, and USA Today, the majority of newsroom staff are women.

AP reported that 76% of full-time news employees in the United States are white, 8% are Latin, 7% are black, and 6% are Asian. News management is 81% white.

Cesar Conde when he started as head of news at NBCUniversal last year Set goals publicly He didn’t give a deadline, but of staff who are 50% minority and 50% female. Since then, the network says the average monthly hire is 48% for people of color and 63% for women. The proportion of minority sectors increased from 27% to 30%.

Doris Chuon, director of training and diversity at Poynter Institute, a journalism think tank, says hiring and maintaining minorities is important, but it’s also important to maintain them. She said the news industry is seeing a generational shift among young staff who are not willing to wait for their attitude to change.

“There is a pipeline problem,” said Robert Hernandez, a professor at the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism. “We produce a diverse range of students. In reality, they are not hired, held, or promoted.”

Hardy said retention is a real issue and the impatience for progress is not unique to the younger generation.

She hopes that the adoption of prominent leadership last year will help us signal the arrival of real change.

“That’s the passion we have,” she said. “It’s what we’ve wanted to live, breathe, talk to, and help for years. Frankly, money stops with us.”

This story corrects Kevin Merida as the second black editor-in-chief of the Los Angeles Times.

Copyright 2021 AP communication. all rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.

Efforts to track the diversity of journalism are lagging | Nationwide

Source link Efforts to track the diversity of journalism are lagging | Nationwide

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